Chatham Square Neighborhood

A Diverse Fair Haven Community with Historic Homes and a Beautiful Waterfront

The Economic & Community Development group met on Monday, June 12, 2017, from 6 – 7:15 pm at 15 Front Street. Present: Christel, Andrew, Rich, Brenda, Lee, Lisa, Natalie C, Ken (alderman ward 14). Comments send by email: NatalieB, Kathleen, Natalie C.



What went well/do again

  • Later date (better chance of warm weather, academic year over)

  • Donations (we made $165 from on-site donations and dragon sales)

  • Canoeing (QRWA took out 105 people)

  • Plant sale (nice addition) Sounds School wants to come back next year and Lyman Hall also wants to come)

  • Cookie lady (popular addition; wants to come back)

  • Road race (great addition; seemed to attract many families w. kids)

  • Kids table very busy (ran out of supplies)

  • Bands and Sweet Sixteen (they were so cute, plus they bring new people to event)

  • Tasting beer and spike seltzer in small quantities w/out tickets much easier

  • Wacoma tents, tables, chair pickup and take back went very smooth

Christel will draft thank you note to various contributors.

Improvements/changes to make next time

  • Timing: Riverfest 2018 will be Sat, May 19 (raindate Sun, May 20), start w. road race at 10, food served 11 onward, live music starts at 12 noon

  • Race:  keep down costs: redo course to lower fees for extra-duty cops, next year we need to consult with Sgt./Lt. Dominguez in planning the race route (basically every intersection needs a cop, so more side streets = more $$$); fewer T-shirts and pizza; no fancy timing system; change start time so street closing doesn’t prevent non-runners from attending Riverfest

  • Music: Definitely bring Bregamos back; FBB and Santiago were great but we may also want to vary music each year (Rich will email suggestions); would love to get SS dancers back, also invite them to participate in planning Riverfest. Rich and Brenda may not be in New Haven during Riverfest next year; if that happens we will have to rethink stage and sound setup.

  • Food: Several people have expressed disappointment w. Anastasio. This is partly because Kevin won’t chip in for Riverfest and partly because people would like more food variety. Suggestion to bring in food trucks, other than dessert. Kevin doesn’t want that, but then he needs to chip in. Lee will see if he can work out a deal, pointing out business brought in from the tours he does.  This issue was brought up last year as well. 


  • Strong School update: Developer Ted Lazarus is still negotiating with the city. Karen DuBois Walton (heads up New Haven housing authority) may be put in charge of property management but they will not be development partners. It is unclear if TL still plans to team up with Meriden housing authority. Last year, city of New Haven promised us to put neighborhood reps on committee that evaluates TL proposal. But they have not notified anybody of such a meeting. Ken (ward 14 alderman) said he thinks community should have input; he will keep an eye on it as it moves forward.

  • Trail map update: There is funding left to create PR postcards; we reviewed a design.

  • Sept. Festival: Our previous coordinator for this event, Hope Metcalf, is stepping down. We need someone to take over that role or there will be no festival

  • Soup or Dining Out Night: Christel will check in with Natalie to see if she wants to host. If not, we can do DON.









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Replies to This Discussion

Great minutes Christel, thank you.  David


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